Paks II is closely watched. project, the construction experience of the Turkish nuclear power plant

By RockedBuzz 8 Min Read

About the prospects of the Hungarian power plant

At the international press conference before the ceremony, Rosatom CEO Alexey Likhachev answered the question of M1 News why Rosatom chose the Build-Own-Operate (BOO) construction for the implementation of the Turkish nuclear power plant, Paks II. referring to the project, he explained: the Russian side is thinking about what efforts are still needed to speed up the Hungarian investment, for which the experience of the nuclear power plant project in Turkey may also be useful.

The CEO reminded that the Turkish nuclear power plant is the first project in the world that Rosatom designed, built and operated (BOO) with its Turkish subsidiary. Its advantage, in addition to the financial structure, is that it minimizes the possible differences in positions between the main contractor and the client.

In connection with the event, Gergely Jákli highlighted on the spot, it is worth observing what problems can arise on the construction site, how to organize the logistics, the development of the environmental infrastructure for a smooth construction.

Paks II. In response to a question about specialists who will operate a nuclear power plant, he explained that when they are needed, they will be available, as their training is built into the project. The training of the instructors training the specialists of the new blocks has already started, he added. He noted: there is a different demand for labor in some phases of the project, and at peak times their number can reach ten thousand.

Paks II. in the current phase of the project, the site preparation is taking place, and the planning and licensing process is still ongoing. Gergely Jákli explained that the preparation of the gap masonry works is in progress, which is a particularly important part of the investment.

He also said that

nuclear projects are currently exempt from European Union sanctions against Russia, but if the conditions change, they must be included in the thinking and planning of the processes so that the construction of the nuclear power plant can be continued.

The nuclear industry is based on safety-regulated procedures, safety analysis, and various scenarios. In connection with sanctions, one must prepare for all possible cases, but this is not the right time at the moment, said the president and CEO.

About the situation and prospects of the Turkish power plant

At the ceremony, Russian President Vladimir Putin emphasized in his online greeting that the Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant is a very important element in Russian-Turkish cooperation. He added that in addition to the construction of the nuclear power plant, the Russian-Turkish economic and touristic relations are developing significantly, the Russian president added, mentioning as an example that Russia is trying to satisfy Turkey’s gas demand in gas transport.

President Putin reminded that 4 nuclear power plant blocks are being built at the same time in Turkey, which will produce 4,800 megawatts of electricity in an environmentally friendly way. Currently, this is the largest nuclear power plant construction in the world, almost 30,000 professionals work in the area, a significant part of them are Turkish citizens. Turkish suppliers do $4.8 billion worth of work.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan highlighted in his online greeting that Turkey has taken the first step by building a power plant to be among the countries that use nuclear energy for peaceful purposes.

The Turkish president said that the construction of the Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant – which is the country’s first such facility – began six years ago, and he thanked the international help received for this and the contribution of Russian specialists.

The construction of the power plant is carried out in a special system, it is a project worth 20 billion dollars. Rosatom is not only an investor, but also a builder of the nuclear power plant, which will be completed by 2028 and provides 10 percent of Turkey’s electricity consumption, President Erdogan explained.

He emphasized that maximum safety requirements were taken into account during the planning and construction of the nuclear power plant, and the recent earthquake proved that the safety calculations were correct. The Turkish president is confident that the second and third nuclear power plants will soon be built in Turkey.

Rafael Grossi, Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), highlighted in his welcome that nuclear energy plays an important role in economic development and is also a clean energy source. The IAEA also supports the Turkish nuclear power plant project with technical assistance and the training of specialists.

Rosatom’s CEO also said at the press conference that the first fuel delivery to the Turkish nuclear power plant started the process that will lead to the start-up of the unit 1 reactor.

In November of this year, the inspection of the systems of Block 1 will begin, which will take several months. The so-called physical start-up is planned for next year, during which the first batch of fuel will be placed in the active zone of the reactor, then after the minimally controlled power level, the energy level will be gradually increased, and in 2025 – in accordance with the contract – electricity production can begin at block 1, he said Alexey Likhachev.

The Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant in Turkey, built with 4 VVER-1200 units, similar to the one in Paks, will be built on the basis of the Turkish-Russian intergovernmental agreement concluded in Ankara on May 12, 2010, in the southern part of Turkey, in the province of Mersin, on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea.

The Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant is Turkey’s first nuclear power plant and the first project in the nuclear energy sector to be implemented in a BOO (Build-Own-Operate) scheme, i.e. the project is owned by the Russian side, which finances the construction and operates the future units, which annually They will produce 35 billion kilowatt hours of electricity. Akkuyu Nuclear, a subsidiary of Rosatom, will carry out the construction, commissioning, operation, and decommissioning at the end of the operating period.

Cover image source: Paks II. Atomerőmű Zrt.’s Facebook page, the photo shows Gergely Jákli, the company’s president and CEO

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